THE STORY OF THE
"SEVEN LAST PLAGUES"
|TABLE OF CONTENTS
Victory Over the Beast and Image
Two Songs of Moses
The "Image" Becomes History
and the Tabernacle
Filled with God's Glory
7 Last Plagues
Who Pours the Bowls
Fall of Jericho
The Elijah Type
The Temple and the Tabernacle
"After These Things I Saw and
the Sanctuary of the Temple
of the Tabernacle of the Witness Was Opened in Heaven."
(Livermore and Meggison Translation.)
We are taken back to 2 Chronicles 5:5. When Solomon's
was almost finished, the exciting day finally came when the "Ark of the
Covenant" was to be placed in the
Temple, as well as all the "holy vessels that
were in the tent."
"And they brought up the ark, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and
all the holy vessels that were in the tabernacle; these did the priests and the Levites
The Levites brought up the
Ark of the Covenant
The ark no longer contained the "golden pot of manna"
(promise of immortality) or "Aaron's rod that budded"
(divine authority of the
priesthood). They were unnecessary because at this point the church either has immortality
or is certain of possessing it, and they are permanently identified with Gods
Temple, no longer needing proof of their favor with God.
In Solomon's Temple the only thing in the
Ark of the Covenant was the
"two tables of the law." Gods law never changes. Its spiritual
requirements will be in the new arrangement.
It is called the "Ark of the Covenant." Ark of what
The sacred Ark represented Gods oath-bound Abrahamic
Covenant. When the Ark of the Covenant is placed in its final resting-place in
the Temple, the time will be near for the blessing of all the families of the earth.
While Revelation 15:5 does not mention the Ark of the Covenant, it
mixes two metaphors:
(1) the "Temple" or
the sanctuary, and
(2) "the Tabernacle of the testimony."
The "Temple" was a permanent structure, while the
"Tabernacle" was temporary. We think this shows what we have already
described. The temporary Tabernacle furnishings, especially the
Ark, were brought
into the permanent Temple condition.
The Tabernacle in the Wilderness
The "tabernacle of the testimony" is an interesting phrase.
While in its temporary condition, the Tabernacle had a "pillar of fire by night"
and a "pillar of cloud" by day as its witness. This witness will be enhanced
when the temporary furnishings become permanently identified with the glorious
"Temple" of Christ. We believe those saints remaining on this side of the veil
will be sealed and identified with this "Temple." Then will follow a very
faithful declaration of Gods judgments.
"And the Seven Angels Came Out of
Having the Seven Plagues,
Clothed in Pure and White Linen, and
Having their Breasts Girded with Golden Girdles."
The "seven angels"
(messengers) were sent forth from the
sanctuary or the temple. The Temple represents the Christ of God. Here the full
power and strength of God's judgment is readied for delivery. Yet, it cannot be
delivered. Why? Even though the seven angels have "golden girdles"
divine servitude), one thing is lacking. What? They must have "golden bowls"
before they can deliver their message.
"And one of the four
beasts [living ones] gave unto the seven angels [messengers]
seven golden vials [bowls] full of the wrath of the God, who liveth for
ever and ever."
The seven angels are girded for service, but with no
way to proceed until God provides the "golden bowls." Then, and only then, are
they empowered to deliver the awesome judgment messages.
This lesson seems to preclude the idea of the "seven
plagues" being poured out throughout the Harvest period. The seven angels were not
given one bowl at a time. Seven bowls were provided simultaneously to the seven messengers
When it is claimed that the plagues are being poured out throughout
the Harvest time, we must ask what "golden bowl" was divinely provided for each?
How could the Great Company and the Second Death class have had a part in delivering these
If we explain this as merely being some ongoing witness by the
Lord's people throughout the Harvest, there would have been a great mixture of
brethren who witnessed to the truth in this Harvest. Probably the majority of brethren
later denied the truths of the Harvest. Others lost faith in it. Such classes could
not, as it were, come from the Temple.
The seven angels are clothed in "white linen, having their breasts
girded with golden girdles."
(Revelation 15:6) Here again, is shown no ordinary standing.
We know the "white linen" is the righteousness of the saints. In this case
it is associated with the seven righteous messages. No ordinary servants these. The
"golden girdles" indicate divine servitude.
"Gave unto the Seven Angels
Seven Golden Vials [Bowls]."
If we have read the sequence correctly, the seven messengers
literally messages) "come out from the Sanctuary or
Temple." Then, and only
then, will "golden bowls" be provided.
They do not come from the "Temple" after it
is filled with "smoke from the glory
of God." They come out of the
"Temple" before it is filled with smoke.
(Revelation 15:6) We
believe the "Living Creature" that provides the "golden bowls" is
Gods lion-like justice.
Still nothing can be poured out! Why?
Even though the seven messages contain the seven last
"plagues," and they are said to be in "white," having "golden girdles"
and given "golden vials [bowls]"—two things remain before
they may pour out the "plagues."
1 The Temple
must be dedicated and "filled" with Gods glory. Revelation 15:8
2 "And I heard a great voice out of the
our Lord] saying to the seven angels [messages], Go your ways, and pour out the
vials [bowls] of the wrath of God upon the earth [stable society]."
When the "great voice" commands, then these seven messages
respond by silently going forth on their commanded mission. However, they do not
go forth until (1) the "Temple is filled with God's glory" and not until
(2) they are commanded to do so from the Temple head, our Lord Jesus.
These two criteria must be met.
Filled with God's Glory
God's glory filling the
Temple is a climaxing point. In
every edifice that God used or designed, the crowning point was always when God's
glory filled it.
"Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the Lord
filled the Tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the
tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the
glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle." Exodus 40:34
The Tabernacle was filled
with God's glory.
No one could go in or come out. Only after being
filled with God's glory could the Tabernacle be used as God's meeting place with
It took one day to assemble the Tabernacle, but putting it together was
one thing. God's glory filling it was another, far more important.
Without God's glory it would be an edifice of wood, gold, copper, silver and cloth.
Nothing has meaning without God and His glory.
Filled with God's Glory
When did Solomon's temple become filled with God's
glory? As you might suspect, it was not until the Ark of the Covenant was placed
in the Most Holy and the priests came out. At this auspicious moment, the glory of the
Lord filled the temple. We read:
"And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the
that the cloud filled the house of the Lord,
"So that the priests could not stand to minister
because of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of the Lord.
"Then spake Solomon, 'The Lord said that he would dwell
in the thick darkness. I have surely built thee an house to dwell in, a settled place for
thee to abide in for ever.'"
1 Kings 8:10-13
We learn something additional here. The glory cloud was not light
and airy like a summer day cloud. Rather, it was "thick darkness." This
indicated God would make His abode with
His Temple class in a time of thick darkness.
No one could enter the Temple class anymore to run for the prize of the
high calling, nor could any of the blessings of the Temple come to mankind yet. This will
be a short period of time, probably covering the Armageddon crash.
Filled with God's Glory
1 Through the East Gate—Ezekiel 43:1-5
2 Through the North Gate—Ezekiel 44:4
Once the East
Gate is shut, it will never open again. The East Gate
is the gate to the High Calling.
"Afterward he brought me to the gate, even the gate that looketh toward the
"And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel came from the way of the east: and
his voice was like a noise of many waters: and the earth shined with his glory.
"And it was according to the appearance of the vision which I saw, even
according to the vision that I saw when I came to destroy the city: and the visions were
like the vision that I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell upon my face.
glory of the Lord came into the house by the way of the gate whose
prospect is toward the east.
"So the spirit took me up, and brought me into the inner court; and, behold,
the glory of the Lord filled the house." Ezekiel 43:1-5
This would indicate that the
East Gate is closed forever when the
Lord's glory fills the Temple. The door to the
High Calling is closed at this juncture.
This is why we cannot possibly admit to the plagues being poured out in the primary sense
throughout the Harvest.
Interestingly, there is sound associated with this vision. Ezekiel says
the sound of His coming was like the sound of "many waters; and the earth shone with
We notice a striking parallel of this in Revelation 19:6:
"And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice
of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings."
It seems the Great Company is suddenly aware that they are not part
of the Little Flock or the Temple Class. The source of their comfort and joy is that they
are invited to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.
Following this, the Lord comes back through the East
commands the Gate to be shut forever. The Lord then proceeds to enter through the
North Gate. We read:
"Then he brought me the way of the north gate before the house: and I
looked, and, behold, the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord; and I fell upon
my face." Ezekiel 44:4
This last glory seems to be when the Lord enters through the North
Gate. Then the marriage of the Bride and the Lamb takes place. In the last vision
(Revelation 19:6-7, 9) the Great Company was invited. In this vision we believe they
shall witness the glory of God as He accepts The Christ as His dwelling place forever. It is amazing how many wonderful things are in God's Word.
What else would we expect with
Gods Living Temple when it is dedicated? Must it not also be filled with
This is exactly what we find. Not only is this Living Temple filled
with smoke "from the glory of God," but it also says "and from His
power." No longer will God hide his glory and power from men. Now they shall
experience it first in God's judgments. Later when the Temple is opened for blessing
the world, they shall experience the power of God's Kingdom blessings.
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